This Hairless Mexican Dog Has a Storied, Ancient Past
With a history going back more than 3,500 years, the xoloitzcuintli dog played a significant role in Precolumbian life.
To the ancient Aztec and Maya, man's best friend was also a hairless, ugly-cute healer, occasional food source, and, most importantly, guide to the Underworld.
Sometimes known as the Mexican Hairless dog, the xoloitzcuintli (pronounced "show-low-itz-QUEENT-ly") gets its name from two words in the language of the Aztecs: Xolotl, the god of lightning and death, and itzcuintli, or dog. According to Aztec belief, the Dog of Xolotl was created by the god to guard the living and guide the souls of the dead through the dangers of Mictlán, the Underworld.
One of the most ancient dog breeds of the Americas, researchers believe the ancestors of the xoloitzcuintli (or 'xolo' for short) accompanied the earliest migrants from Asia and had